All Publications

  • The MYC Oncogene Cooperates with Sterol-Regulated Element-Binding Protein to Regulate Lipogenesis Essential for Neoplastic Growth. Cell metabolism Gouw, A. M., Margulis, K., Liu, N. S., Raman, S. J., Mancuso, A., Toal, G. G., Tong, L., Mosley, A., Hsieh, A. L., Sullivan, D. K., Stine, Z. E., Altman, B. J., Schulze, A., Dang, C. V., Zare, R. N., Felsher, D. W. 2019


    Lipid metabolism is frequently perturbed in cancers, but the underlying mechanism is unclear. We present comprehensive evidence that oncogene MYC, in collaboration with transcription factor sterol-regulated element-binding protein (SREBP1), regulates lipogenesis to promote tumorigenesis. We used human and mouse tumor-derived cell lines, tumor xenografts, and four conditional transgenic mouse models of MYC-induced tumors to show that MYC regulates lipogenesis genes, enzymes, and metabolites. We found that MYC induces SREBP1, and they collaborate to activate fatty acid (FA) synthesis and drive FA chain elongation from glucose and glutamine. Further, by employing desorption electrospray ionization mass spectrometry imaging (DESI-MSI), we observed invivo lipidomic changes upon MYC induction across different cancers, for example, aglobal increase in glycerophosphoglycerols. After inhibition of FA synthesis, tumorigenesis was blocked, and tumors regressed in both xenograft and primary transgenic mouse models, revealing the vulnerability of MYC-induced tumors to the inhibition of lipogenesis.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.cmet.2019.07.012

    View details for PubMedID 31447321

  • Oncogene KRAS activates fatty acid synthase, resulting in specific ERK and lipid signatures associated with lung adenocarcinoma PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA Gouw, A. M., Eberlin, L. S., Margulis, K., Sullivan, D. K., Toal, G. G., Tong, L., Zare, R. N., Felsher, D. W. 2017; 114 (17): 4300-4305


    KRAS gene mutation causes lung adenocarcinoma. KRAS activation has been associated with altered glucose and glutamine metabolism. Here, we show that KRAS activates lipogenesis, and this activation results in distinct proteomic and lipid signatures. By gene expression analysis, KRAS is shown to be associated with a lipogenesis gene signature and specific induction of fatty acid synthase (FASN). Through desorption electrospray ionization MS imaging (DESI-MSI), specific changes in lipogenesis and specific lipids are identified. By the nanoimmunoassay (NIA), KRAS is found to activate the protein ERK2, whereas ERK1 activation is found in non-KRAS-associated human lung tumors. The inhibition of FASN by cerulenin, a small molecule antibiotic, blocked cellular proliferation of KRAS-associated lung cancer cells. Hence, KRAS is associated with activation of ERK2, induction of FASN, and promotion of lipogenesis. FASN may be a unique target for KRAS-associated lung adenocarcinoma remediation.

    View details for DOI 10.1073/pnas.1617709114

    View details for PubMedID 28400509

  • Inhibition of MYC-induced lipogenesis prevents renal cell carcinoma initiation and progression Gouw, A., Margulis, K., Sullivan, D., Toal, G., Eberlin, L., Dang, C., Zare, R., Felsher, D. AMER CHEMICAL SOC. 2017
  • Metabolic vulnerabilities of MYC-induced cancer ONCOTARGET Gouw, A. M., Toal, G. G., Felsher, D. W. 2016; 7 (21): 29879–80

    View details for PubMedID 26863454

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